Adweek: "TV’s Landscape Is Evolving, and Marketers Need to Adapt"

Brian Stempeck, Chief Client Officer at The Trade Desk, and contributor to Adweek's Voice Network, believes that Connected TV (CTV) and traditional TV are on a collision course.

In this article, Stempeck discusses how The Trade Desk first entered the television space. He notes, "Our strategy for CTV and Over-the-Top (OTT) was to use the same data and decisions to evaluate every single ad we bought, household by household, and bring programmatic and audience buying to CTV." Fast forward to today, and connected TV and traditional TV are on a collision course.

The growth in CTV has been explosive and driven by a rapid consumer shift in viewing behavior. Meanwhile, on the TV side, things still look rosier than ever. So, headed into the 2018 Upfronts, how should one reconcile these seemingly conflicting narratives? How should a marketer make sense of the seismic shifts affecting the TV industry right now? Stempeck highlights a few ways that programmatic and connected TV are shaping the next year of upfront commitments:

  • TV viewing is not binary - many consumers are both watching cable and streaming content
  • Connected TV is operating at scale and is a big part of how Americans watch TV now
  • Audience buying is now possible on CTV as well
  • GRPs can still be the currency of record

Stempeck shares that as marketers, we have an opportunity to make the TV viewing experience better. If we don’t, the shift to subscription models or ad blocking might end up as the real threats to our industry. CTV offers ways to build on top of the model that broadcast TV developed. Targeted ads can drive higher CPMs for sellers, better results for marketers and fewer ads for consumers. The same, or greater, revenue can come from fewer ads. Digitally served ads can also solve TV’s frequency challenges.

As buyers head into the 2018 Upfronts season, they need to keep the power and benefits of connected TV top-of-mind throughout negotiations. Striking a balance between connected TV and traditional TV buying strategies is how innovative brands will prosper amidst this massive industry transformation.